Paul Tuthill

Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief

Paul Tuthill is WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief. He’s been covering news, everything from politics and government corruption to natural disasters and the arts, in western Massachusetts since 2007. Before joining WAMC, Paul was a reporter and anchor at WRKO in Boston.  He was news director for more than a decade at WTAG in Worcester.  Paul has won more than two dozen Associated Press Broadcast Awards. He won an Edward R. Murrow award for reporting on veterans’ healthcare for WAMC in 2011.  Born and raised in western New York, Paul did his first radio reporting while he was a student at the University of Rochester.

Ways to Connect

New details about the criminal history of the man who murdered a Massachusetts police officer this week have renewed calls for bail reform.

WAMC

    A state legislator from Springfield is working to craft a bill he believes will make it easier for municipalities throughout Massachusetts to rid neighborhoods of abandoned, blighted buildings by forcing owners to step out of the shadows.

       The Massachusetts House is expected to pass a bill today to make it easier for people to obtain public information from the state and local governments.  It is the first major overhaul of the state’s public records law in more than forty years.

        WAMC’s Paul Tuthill spoke with Democratic State Representative Stephen Kulik of Worthington who sat on the bi-partisan conference committee that drafted the final compromise bill.

State Rep. Benjamin Swan
WAMC

A long-time state lawmaker from western Massachusetts known as the “Conscience of the House” is retiring from public service, and hoping to turn his seat in the Statehouse over to his son.

a blighted house is demolished
WAMC

     A state legislator is planning to file a bill to make it easier to rid Massachusetts municipalities of blighted property.

           State Rep. Carlos Gonzalez of Springfield is crafting legislation that would set a 30-day deadline in Massachusetts to register the transfer of ownership of a property. 

       He said too often when there is a foreclosure, or distress sale, a new owner delays registering the deed. It makes it difficult for officials to find the rightful owner if the property is later abandoned.

WAMC

A public art and beautification project began Monday in Springfield, Massachusetts.

Tributes continue for a Massachusetts police officer shot and killed over the weekend during a traffic stop.

A Massachusetts police officer was fatally shot Sunday by a suspect who was later killed in a shootout that left a state trooper wounded. 

MassBenchmarks

Economic indicators, including the just released unemployment rate for April, are generally positive for Massachusetts.  But, a panel of economists writing  in the economic journal MassBenchmarks warns the state’s economy is on precarious footing. 

WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with Robert Nakosteen, an economics professor at UMass Amherst and executive editor of MassBenchmarks.

wikipedia.org

The city council in Springfield, Massachusetts is scheduled to vote Monday on a special permit for the city’s first medical marijuana dispensary.

Springfield apartment complex for homeless veterans
WAMC

An apartment complex for homeless veterans opened Friday in Springfield, Massachusetts.

Wikipedia

A conservative-leaning think tank and the University of Massachusetts clashed this week over admissions policy and capital expenses at the state’s land-grant public university system.

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker
WAMC

The number of homeless families living in hotels and motels at state expense is down sharply in Massachusetts.  Gov. Charlie Baker is making good on a pledge to end the practice.

Mass.Dept of Veterans Services

Following a management shakeup last year, the Baker administration has named a new superintendent at the only long-term care facility for veterans in western Massachusetts.

umass.edu

A study from a conservative-leaning think tank is criticizing the University of Massachusetts for admitting too many out-of-state students.

WAMC

Massachusetts is the only state in the nation with a statewide bike week.  Hundreds of events are taking place this week from the Berkshires to Cape Cod where bicycling is highlighted as an alternative form of transportation. 

WAMC

The number of homeless families living in motels at state expense in Massachusetts is down sharply.

The Massachusetts legislature is expected to take an initial step tomorrow in enacting a so-called “millionaires’ tax.”  Advocates on both sides are stepping up their lobbying.

crews work to repair a hole in a street
WAMC

In the wake of a water main break that caused a large sinkhole in downtown Springfield earlier this month, city councilors have called for a series of meetings to discuss the status of the city’s underground infrastructure.

MGMSpringfield

Massachusetts casino regulators have approved a redesign of the MGM Springfield casino with the chairman of the state gaming commission saying he remains excited about the project’s potential to lift the economically struggling city.

An artists rendering of the proposed MGM Casino in Springfield, MA
MGMSpringfield

Massachusetts gaming industry regulators are expected to vote Thursday on design changes for the MGM Springfield casino.

Massachusetts-based Friendly’s Ice Cream is selling its manufacturing and retail operations to the country’s largest dairy processor for $155 million in cash.  It is the latest chapter in the story of a company founded in western Massachusetts during the Great Depression.

Massachusetts-based Friendly’s Ice Cream is selling its manufacturing and retail operations to the country’s largest dairy processor for $155 million in cash.

Mount Zion Island in the Quabbin Reservoir
Mass DCR

Baker administration officials say there will be more study of a plan to start a colony of venomous timber rattlesnakes on a remote island in a large central Massachusetts water reservoir.

candidates for sheriff debate
Fred Gore

Five of the candidates for sheriff in Hampden County, Massachusetts had their first chance to make a direct case to voters as they participated in a primetime debate this week.

The five candidates talked up their qualifications and experiences, highlighted differences over how they see the sheriff’s role in combating the opioid addiction crisis gripping the state, and discussed transparency in the $70 million department that has been run by the same person for almost four decades.

A just-released scientific study says imported forest pests such as the Asian longhorned beetle and emerald ash borer are causing more than $2 billion in damages each year in the United States.

Officlas in hard hats tour Union Station
WAMC

Eight months away from the scheduled completion of the renovation of Union Station in Springfield, Amtrak officials toured the work site today with the goal of providing suggestions to make the $88.5 million publicly funded project a success.

A new budget has been adopted for the second-largest public school system in Massachusetts that officials say puts “students first.”   The Springfield Public Schools will spend more money next year on technology in the classrooms, early childhood education, and launch a program to put a computer in the hands of every student.

Funds have been approved to begin providing a computer to every student in the second-largest public school system in Massachusetts.

   The Springfield School Committee approved a new budget for next year that includes money to begin a program to put a computer in the hands of every child, according to school department spokesperson Azell Cavaan.

"We are talking close to 60 schools, 26,000 students, one-to-one computers," she said. " It is a huge endeavor."

The total budget to operate the Springfield schools is $394 million. 

a corner face off in the MassMutual Center
MassMutual Center

Fates can change quickly in sports. The fates of two New England cities with long hockey histories became intertwined this week, with one winner and one loser.

Two weeks ago, people in Springfield, Massachusetts were bemoaning the loss of the city’s American Hockey League team to Tucson, Az. and the likely end of almost 80 years of professional hockey in western Massachusetts.

" I think people really thought we were losing hockey, but now it seems we've been able to pull a rabbit out of our hat," said  Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno.

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